The management of ADHD in children and adolescents: bringing evidence to the clinic: perspective from the European ADHD Guidelines Group (EAGG)

D Coghill, T Banaschewski, Samuele Cortese, Philip Asherson, Daniel Brandeis, J Buitelaar, David Daley, Marina Danckhaerts, R. W. Dittmann, M. Doepfner, Maite Ferrin, C Hollis, Martin Holtmann, Paramala Santosh, Edmund Sonuga-Barke, Cesar Soutullo, Hans-Christoph Steinhausen, Saskia Van Der Oord, Ian C K Wong, Alessandro ZuddasEmily Simonoff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)
119 Downloads (Pure)


ADHD is the most common neurodevelopmental disorder presenting to child and adolescent mental health, paediatric, and primary care services. Timely and effective interventions to address core ADHD symptoms and co-occurring problems are a high priority for healthcare and society more widely. While much research has reported on the benefits and adverse effects of different interventions for ADHD, these individual research reports and the reviews, meta-analyses and guidelines summarizing their findings are sometimes inconsistent and difficult to interpret. We have summarized the current evidence and identified several methodological issues and gaps in the current evidence that we believe are important for clinicians to consider when evaluating the evidence and making treatment decisions. These include understanding potential impact of bias such as inadequate blinding and selection bias on study outcomes; the relative lack of high-quality data comparing different treatments and assessing long-term effectiveness, adverse effects and safety for both pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments; and the problems associated with observational studies, including those based on large national registries and comparing treatments with each other. We highlight key similarities across current international clinical guidelines and discuss the reasons for divergence where these occur. We discuss the integration of these different perspective into a framework for person/family-centered evidence-based practice approach to care that aims to achieve optimal outcomes that prioritize individual strengths and impairments, as well as the personal treatment targets of children and their families. Finally, we consider how access to care for this common and impairing disorder can be improved in different healthcare systems.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Publication statusPublished - 22 Oct 2021


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